Where’s my refund?

What is where’s my refund?

It is exciting to know that you will be receiving a refund after filing your federal tax return. How long do you have to wait before receiving your money? Usually, the IRS issues most tax refunds within 21 days of filing online or six weeks of mailing your paper return. After your income tax has been e-filed and accepted by the IRS, there is a tool that can help you track your refund. It provides the refund date as soon as the IRS processes your tax return and approves your refund.

This refund tracker name is: Where’s My Refund or if you are on a smartphone you can use the IRS2GO mobile app.

How to check IRS refund status?

To check your IRS refund status or use Where’s My Refund, you need three pieces of information: 

     1 – Your social security number or ITIN

     2 – Your filing status – It could be single, married, or head of household 

     3 – Your exact refund amount – Providing the whole dollar amount is essential to receiving the correct response.

where's my refund

Important facts about where’s my refund tool

  • Check if it at least 24 hours after e-filing 
  • Expect delays if you mailed your return or responded to an IRS notice
  • IRS updates Where’s My Refund daily, usually overnight

After correctly entering your information, a new page will open that shows your IRS refund status. A progress bar with the three following messages indicates your tax return status.

  • Received: The IRS now has your tax return and is working to process it.
  • Approved: Return has been processed and refund amount confirmed.
  • Sent: The money is on its way to your bank or as a paper check to your mailbox.

Your Tax Return is still being processed

If you see “Your tax return is still being processed” while checking your refund status, don’t panic! The date you get your federal tax refund depends on how you filed your return. The IRS states that some tax returns take longer to process than others for many reasons, including when a return:

  • Includes errors
  • Is incomplete
  • Is affected by identity theft or fraud
  • Contains a claim filed for an Earned Income Tax Credit
  • Involves a Form 8379, Injured Spouse Allocation PDF, which could take up to 14 weeks to process
  • Needs further review in general

If you submitted your federal tax return by mail, the IRS says it could take six to eight weeks for your tax refund to arrive. The IRS will contact you by mail when they need more information to process your return.

If you see the message Your tax return is still being processed when using where’s my refund, think about calling the IRS by making use of these instructions to reach a real person at the IRS.

Will Where’s My Refund give me my IRS amended return status?

No, it will not give you information about amended tax returns. Where’s My Amended Return will let you know the status of your IRS amended return. (IRS phone and walk-in representatives can only give you information about your amended return 16 weeks or more after its mailing.)

Will Where’s My Refund give me my stimulus check status?

No, it will not give you information about stimulus check status. Get My Payment will let you know the status of your third Economic Impact Payment. The first and second stimulus checks no longer appear in Get My Payment.

To find the amounts of these stimulus checks, view or create your online account. You can also refer to Notice 1444 for the first payment and Notice 1444-B for the second stimulus check. The IRS mailed these notices to the address on file.